Lakers player grades from embarrassing loss at home to Timberwolves

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The Los Angeles Lakers lost in embarrassing fashion to the Minnesota Timberwolves, 107-83.

Los Angeles trailed 11-4 early, but after settling in and slowing the pace with a smaller starting five, L.A. gained a 26-19 lead after one quarter. Both teams had a back-and-forth affair in the second quarter, but L.A. led by five going into the break.

That’s when everything changed.

Minnesota went nuclear from everywhere on the court with Karl-Anthony Towns and D’Angelo Russell hitting every three coming out of halftime; Towns even hit one on an inbound pass with 0.3 seconds on the shot clock.

Minnesota outscored L.A. 40-12 in the third. The Lakers couldn’t buy a shot, turned the ball over and played lackadaisical defense to put the cherry on top. Towns’ 18 third-quarter points outscored the Lakers’ 12.

The game was in the books by the fourth.

Here’s how the Lakers graded individually from the defeat:

Russell Westbrook: F

The birthday boy had a birthday to forget. His box score numbers of 20 points on 7-of-11 shooting, 2-of-4 3-point shooting look appealing, but his impact was non-existent. His drives to the rim often lacked purpose, and Russell clearly had the more effective night.

Avery Bradley: F

Avery Bradley had a big game against the Miami Heat, but he couldn’t do much to stop what happened in this one. He finished with five points (2-of-6 FG), two rebounds and an assist in 27 minutes.

Kent Bazemore: F

Kent Bazemore’s slump continues. He played just 16 minutes, the lowest of any starter, and missed all four of his shots; three were from deep. It’s been a terrible stretch of games for the veteran wing.

Wayne Ellington: F

Wayne Ellington got the starting nod over DeAndre Jordan to increase the spacing with Anthony Davis at center, but he didn’t have the impact he had against the Heat. He went 2-of-8 overall (2-of-7 from deep) and struggled mightily on the defensive end, too, both on and off the ball.

Anthony Davis: D

Towns outplayed Davis in this one. Davis put up 22 points, eight rebounds, three blocks, three steals and two assists, but he and the Lakers forced too many jumpshots instead of attacking the rim when the Wolves started to run away in the third quarter. Davis’ first half was much better than the second.

Malik Monk: F

Malik Monk also fell apart in this game after a 27-point explosion against the Heat. He shot 3-of-11 overall (1-of-7 from deep) for seven points and misplaced passes most of the night. Just a terrible performance for him on both ends considering the momentum he came in with.

Carmelo Anthony: F

Carmelo Anthony had his worst outing at Staples Center. He’s usually been a microwave at home, but he shot 1-of-12 overall (1-of-8 from deep) in 24 minutes.

Rajon Rondo: D

For his role, Rajon Rondo was OK. Seven points, eight assists and two steals in 24 minutes (including garbage time) isn’t a bad stat line to have because he made some nice shots and passes in the first half, including a ridiculous, contested one-handed floater.

Dwight Howard: D-minus

Dwight Howard made solid defensive plays that raised the energy in the building, but a good chunk of his minutes also came in garbage time. The veteran center finished with nine points, 10 rebounds, two steals and a block in 23 minutes.

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